It looks like the Xbox 360's successor -- dubbed by many the "Xbox 720" -- may be getting an announcement at E3 2012, if various and frequent rumors are to be believed.

Insider tech blog BGR reports that "a source with knowledge of Microsoft's plans within the company's Entertainment and Devices Division" has blown the lid off of Microsoft's E3 2012 keynote, as the company plans to unveil their new console. However, a strange note from BGR says that the new console has been in development since 2006, which is just one year removed from the Xbox 360's release.

Tellingly, this is just on the heels of news from VideoGamer.com, who says that a "high-ranking industry source at Crytek" is expecting "tessellation, multithreaded rendering, and compute shaders" to be part of the technology boost for the Xbox 720.

To wit:

The development source is reportedly well abreast of Microsoft's development plans due to Crytek's intention to ship TimeSplitters 4 for the new console. The Crytek developer said that the game will have a heavy emphasis on "the series' branching paths and exploratory nature," and it will also feature sandbox-style gameplay. TimeSplitters 4 is already up and running using the studio's proprietary CryEngine 3, the source noted.

However, it's worth noting that Crytek itself later said that particular piece of industry scuttlebutt was untrue.